Checking Out the Hardin

On my way to work I managed to squeeze in a half-hour of birding in Hardin ng Rosas in UP Diliman. It was part of my first ever birding experience where I marveled at my first Common Moorhens and Common Kingfishers. I also made new friends that day =)

As I pulled into a parking slot, I was happy to see the wire fence stripped of vegetation, allowing me to view the field and small body of water on the other side. An odd group of birds was busy foraging in the grass and I was happy to see a Common Moorhen among that group. It was feeding alongside Crested Mynas, Rock Dove, and Eurasian Tree Sparrows. A small flock of Chestnut Munias also flew back and forth across the field.

I scanned the fringes of the grasslands hoping to see a rail or crake, but found none. There were also quite a lot of people busy tending the small rice field and the only birds to be unperturbed by them or the creepy-faced scarecrow were the mayas, who flew in huge flocks around the area.

Creepy anime-faced scarecrow

I was hoping to see some Java Sparrows. The last time I visited the Hardin, I saw a big flock of them perched on a small tree in the middle of the field. While I scanned and waited, I amused myself with the busy butterflies fluttering around and feeding in the bush in front of me.

No Java Sparrows.

I walked to the end of the compound and sought the shade of a big acacia tree. There were more Eurasian Tree Sparrows, Philippine Pygmy Woodpeckers, and Golden-bellied Gerygones in the canopy. I also heard a Collared Kingfisher calling unseen. To my surprise, the Java Sparrows were there in the acacia tree! =)

I was happy to see them still in Hardin =)

The day was getting hotter by the minute (and it was only past 9AM!) The birds were also beginning to feel the heat.
Refreshing bath in the shade!

I spent a few minutes waiting near the small “stream” by the wall, hoping for a heron or bittern, but found none. Oh well, it was time to go to work anyway.

What a wonder cropping can do! ;)
I cropped out the murky water and soap suds =P

I began and ended May with some Quezon City birding, plus a bit more in between, but nothing more than that. Hopefully this June, I’ll be able to go out birding more. As a farewell song, a handsome Olive-backed Sunbird sang in front of me as I backed up the car and drove away =)